The new executive leadership team of French racing operator Pari Mutuel Urbain (PMU) has presented its new ‘operating roadmap’ to French media outlining the firm’s corporate recovery and transformation strategy.
Having undertaken an internal review, new Chief Executive Cyril Linette, the executive appointed by France Galop and Le Trot to ‘reinvigorate the PMU’, has outlined a series of efficiencies, which the legacy operator will move to implement, reviving French racing for all stakeholders.
Speaking at a press conference last Friday, Linette detailed confidence in PMU’s long-term prospects, despite the operator noting 2018 wagering declines across its portfolio – sports & poker -2.3% to €9.7 billion, horseracing -2.6% to €8.8 billion.
Countering declines, the new PMU executive team will move to launch a €28-30 million cost savings plan, with Linette ordering ‘strong actions’ to be sanctioned across PMU’s retail network, which at present generates 75% of corporate wagers.
In its mandate, the PMU will establish a new loyalty programme, with the aim of better engaging and rewarding regular French racing patrons.
Linette states that under his leadership, the PMU will ‘place horseracing bettors back at the centre of its business’. A key proposal enforced by Linette, sees the PMU revamp its ‘Quinté +’ French racing pool system, which has removed all bonus rounds, making its offering ‘less reliant on chance’.
Despite the strong focus on rewarding loyal racing customers, Linette’s executive team acknowledges that its business needs to engage with wider audiences, with PMU confirming that it will launch a ‘general public awareness’ nationwide campaign, scheduled for late April.
Finally, as an initial cost saving, PMU executives confirm that the operator will no longer service the Brazilian horseracing market, ending its partnership with Rio de Janeiro racing track – Hipódromo da Gávea.
Linette outlined that PMU would no longer support a Brazilian racing presence, as in 2019 the operator would fully focus on French growth and returning maximum value to France Galop and Le Trot directives.